Thursday, January 31, 2013

Some thoughts after a sleepless night

Motherhood is a strange thing. It's almost another dimension that suspends time, skews perspectives, and alters reality. My days, which are filled with scrubbing poop off clothes, dishes, singing Disney songs, and doing exercises that use Lyla as resistance weight, seem to drag on and on...and on. They are endless and slow but simultaneously passing me by--I can rarely (and by rarely, I  mean one time above never) do dishes, make dinner, clean up, and fold laundry all in one day.

All I can concentrate on is my pretty, pretty baby (allow me to gloat--I'm a first time mom) and my laundry list of things to do. And then we get an invite to go out with friends and I crash into real-life reality and realize that there IS a world outside of our overpriced apartment. Even when we go out with Lyla, she takes all my focus because she's a time bomb.  "Is she going to freak out?" "When's the last time she ate?" "Oh man, did she just poop HERE?!" "Quick! Where's the burp rag?!"

I feel like we're inside this plastic bubble and if you can't pop the bubble, you don't exist. Anyway, reality comes knocking and she carries with her a gigantic mirror that shows me my split ends, t-shirts with spit-up, and fading yoga pants and I ask myself, "How the heck did it come to this?"

Then I look at Lyla. She looks at me with her big gummy smile and I realize it doesn't really matter how it came to "this." "This" is being a mom. It's the most difficult thing I've ever done or ever become, but I love it (or when the sleepless nights are many and the naps are few, I love her). And while I have no illusions that some women can do it all (homemade dinner, reupholster the couch, paint their nails, dust) in skinny jeans, a really good (but uncomfortable) bra and some seriously cute wedges, I can't. At least, not yet. Maybe next month. Ha! Maybe when time stands still in the alternate universe of Motherhood.

I always pictured myself as a career women. When you graduate with an advertising degree, you certainly don't picture "this." My life, which was headed down the trajectory I planned, took a sharp left at the corner of Priorities and Reality. Circumstances change. People change. I change (or rather, I am changing).

And here I am. A mother. With a little baby girl who is 4 months old today. Can you believe that? I really, really, can't. How is it possible that she's already growing up so fast and yet my days seem to go by so slowly? Does every mother experience this paradox?

The picture I painted of my life is changing (the setting is colder--thank you Minnesota, the colors--so much brighter due to that gummy, chubby smile, and the characters are new friends who I love) and I think it's going to be my greatest masterpiece yet.


Heather said...

It's so true. Motherhood brings the highest highs and the lowest lows. Once you become "mom" you can't ever turn that off again. I'm so glad to know you're finding joy in with all the difficulty. Sometimes I look at myself and wonder who I am and how I got this way, but ultimately I remember that motherhood is my divine role on Earth and I would live this life again 5 million times if it meant raising my beautiful babies each time.

P & J said...

Oh I so love this!!! I seriously think we are twins, we have the same thoughts. We need to talk more! So I can stop driving Josh crazy with all this mom talk! Seriously every day I think of those women in bedazzled skinny jeans reupholstering their furniture. I can't compete!